Olympic events out of control

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Ping pong. Badminton. Trampoline. Synchronized diving for men and women. I could go on and on.

I’ve spent a little time watching the Olympics on TV the past week and a half.

I enjoy watching the gymnastics. I can still remember watching Mary Lou Retton when I was little.

And this time, I’ve enjoyed watching the swimming and diving. Auburn was well-represented among those athletes from the United States and elsewhere. You can not help but be very, very proud when you see those Auburn students win or simply compete.

Olympic organizers have gone crazy, however.

Some of the &uot;events&uot; they have are just out there.

Ping pong. Excuse me, table tennis (we must be politically correct).

I went to camp and believe me, it’s called ping pong.

And it certainly should not qualify as an Olympic sport. Then, there’s badminton. Please … please … fire the person who thought this event was worthy.

Trampoline jumping. This is something we all did — flips on the trampoline. I did notice, however, that the competitors in this event were much older than the other events. I guess this is where former Olympic athletes go when the &uot;Glory Days&uot; are over.

Synchronized diving – this is even worse than synchronized swimming. I wonder who wakes up one day and says, &uot;I have just got to be one of those synchronized divers. Get me a speedo – quick!&uot;

The one that has absolutely had me on the edge of my seat, however, is the beach volleyball – yes, that’s right, beach volleyball.

Not only is this just plain crazy, but it should have been called naked beach volleyball; because they wear no clothes, &uot;as near nothing as you could put on,&uot; my momma said.

If these events made it, I’ve got a few they should try. Toe-nail clipping and ear wiggling should definitely be there. BINGO for senior Olympians and ABCs for younger Olympians. They should also add doggy paddling to the swimming competition.

Then, a musical chairs event would round out the competition nicely. The host country could pick the music, of course.

Adding these great new events would make it even better, especially for NBC which would be able to drag it out for another two weeks.

Candace Parker is the news editor at the Reporter. She can be reached at mailto:candace.parker@shelbycountyreporter.com